The Start of a new journey for Southern Ocean Lodge

January 3, 2021 marks a year since the bushfires that had been raging across South Australia’s Kangaroo Island destroyed the beautiful Southern Ocean Lodge.

About 4 years ago I had the great fortune of not only traveling to Kangaroo Island but spending time at this stunning lodge with my family and it was every bit amazing as one would expect.

While still in negotiations the Baillies have partnered with South Australian film makers 57 Films to chart the journey of the new lodge’s creation from the ground up to doors opening, with a view to completing the project in early 2023.

57 Films Director/Producer Paul Ryan and Director of Photography Isaac Walgos have already travelled to the Southern Ocean Lodge site to interview James and Hayley as they walked through the scorched landscape. The pair will return frequently to record build developments with the regeneration of the coastal wilderness as backdrop and meet some of the lodge’s essential local partners. Included already is sculptor Indiana James who created ‘Sunshine’ the kangaroo from reclaimed tractor parts.

Sunshine would greet and farewell guests from his position in the upper lounge of the lodge’s Great Room. As a heart-warming symbol of hope and resilience, Sunshine was discovered still valiantly standing after the fires had obliterated the building and its contents, and the film is named Sunshine Rising in his honour.

Hayley Baillie said planning for Southern Ocean Lodge 2.0 offered a chance to recreate all the essentials that made a stay there so rewarding and memorable, whilst adding some new features that would delight guests and add to their experience of the incredible Kangaroo Island wilderness.

“When we opened Southern Ocean Lodge in 2008, it was the result of a marathon five years in planning and hard work. And I said to James, if only we’d thought to take video footage of this incredible journey from the ground up,” Mrs Baillie said.

“Now, for better or worse, we’re fortunate to have our chance again,” she said.

And you better believe as soon as the doors of the new lodge open I will be there to check it out first hand. I expect to be wowed!

And while Australia’s borders are currently closed to international travelers, we at Rothschild Safaris are still working with several travelers on customizing their itineraries, so when the borders do open all we have to do is book their flights!

Credit: Baillie Lodges